Multilingual Neobank Lounge Raises $ 20 Million
The multilingual neobank startup Fair raised $ 20 million in less than 40 days and is preparing to launch to the general public in April, with early memberships available in March, the company said in a Press release Tuesday (February 9). Sponsors were not disclosed.
Membership-based FinTech, headquartered in Houston, Texas, strives to provide ethical banking and financial services.
“Our fundraising success is partly attributed to the need for a platform like Fair,” said Khalid Parekh, Founder and CEO. “Research tells us that blacks and Latinos pay twice as much in bank fees, while the racial wealth gap continues to widen.” He added that people are struggling “in the hands of our current financial model” and that Fair was created “to help all consumers keep more money in their pocket, so they can thrive.” This is why our purpose and our promise is in our name. “
Parekh came to the United States from India “with $ 100 in his pocket” some 20 years ago. At the time, he was having trouble opening a bank account or getting a loan. He created Fair to serve newcomers to the United States who do not yet have credit. He said Fair “prides itself” on an ethical and transparent bank. Because it works on a membership model, there are no bank charges.
“In addition to fixing the banking practices that cost us all, as an immigrant entrepreneur, I have seen how the lack of opportunity can limit advancement,” Parekh said. “Understanding the complex fee structures and the fine print is difficult for many people born in the United States. Qualifying for a business loan is impossible for an immigrant without a credit history. Falling into a cycle of debt is inevitable with high interest loans. Fair’s vision is to tackle these inequalities. “
Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) of fair practices, an investment strategy that avoids companies considered to have a negative social impact. The startup also practices environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) investments, focused on sustainability. Fair will also donate 2.5 percent of the proceeds to global refugee causes.
Parekh is also the founder of the $ 350 million tech company AMSYS Group.
Monitoring of November 2020 disbursements by PYMNTS, in collaboration with Ingo Money, indicated that financial institutions can help the unbanked and those suffering from financial difficulties by offering digital and mobile options.